New Rules Aim to Improve Child Custody Evaluations

Psychologists in Washington state now operate under new rules when making child custody evaluations. The rules are in the Washington Administrative Code at Section 246-924-445. Among the new requirements:

  • The rules prohibit a psychologist who has provided therapy to “any party involved in the evaluation” from performing a parenting (child custody) evaluation, except in special circumstances.
  • The evaluating psychologist may include in the evaluation report a comment about a person she or he has not evaluated, but only if the psychologist also gives the source of the comment and reveals that the psychologist did not evaluate the person.
  • The psychologist’s recommendations and conclusions must be based on information from more than one source and “must be supported by the data collected.”

Child Abuse Defense thanks Brett Trowbridge, Ph.D., and the Trowbridge Foundation for alerting us to the rule changes.